January 2010: Happy New Year . . . Maybe

This isn’t People or Us magazine or the National Enquirer, but here’s my prediction for you for 2010: I predict that 2010 will be the most successful and prosperous, most meaningful, most fulfilling, and happiest year you will ever have if . . . you will read, study, meditate upon, and obey! everything you read in Joshua 1: 7 – 9; Job 23: 10 – 12; Psalm 23: 4; Isaiah 48: 18; Matthew 6: 33 and 34; and Luke 6: 38.  C’mon now.  You’d like to have a great 2010, wouldn’t you?  Just read, study, meditate upon, and obey! what those references teach, and you will have a great year.  God guarantees it!

2010: A “Chunk” of Time

 No human being has ever walked down the very tiny chunk of time called 2010. But God has! He is simultaneously present in all of time—including 2010.  Actually, it’s not that God will be present throughout this year we call 2010.  He is already fully present in 2010, beckoning you to step forward boldly and walk confidently with Him into a year unknown to you, but already fully known to Him.  He knows the “maze” of your 2010—every  twist and turn, every treacherous curve, every dangerous portion  of each day, every valley, every pitfall, every cool refreshing rest stop and spring along your journey—during this brief span of time we call 2010.  

All the events and situations you’ll face during 2010 are already wrapped up in the loving heart of God . . . and so are you!  With God, you can walk through the seasons of 2010 with a spring in your step, with love, with faith, with hope, with heightened expectations, with peace, with delight, with joy, with boldness, with confidence.

Wonder-full miracles from God’s benevolent hand will be coming your way all year;  you just need to keep your eyes open to see your miracles as they approach you—and then reach out to grab them before they whiz right on by.  How can 2010 be anything less than terrific if you’re really traveling with God and trusting in his provision and care?  Nothing will happen to you during 2010 without being filtered through God’s love for you!  

God is a good God and everything He does is good (Psalm 119: 68).  His thoughts toward you are always positive and good (Jeremiah 29: 11).  He has nothing but his very best in store for you for 2010.  Yes, 2010 really can be the best year you’ve ever experienced…if you’ll obey all those biblical references I cited in the second paragraph.  Have a great journey with God through 2010!

2010 really is a whole new year ahead of you. It’s a brief fragment of time God has given to you for certain reasons.  I don’t mean to be morbid by asking you these questions, but “You do know, don’t you, that there are no guarantees you’ll live the entire chunk of time we call 2010?  At some level inside you, you really do know that, don’t you?  C’mon, be honest.”  Oh, I know you’d like to live the entire year; you’d like to be here for all 365 days of 2010;  you hope you’ll live the whole year through.  But, again, there aren’t any guarantees that you will.  Put it this way:  What day of the week in this month called January are you reading these words?  What guarantee do you have that you’ll even be alive at the end of this very day?  The answer? 

None of us knows how long we have yet to travel during our mortal journeys.  Our lives just don’t come with that type of knowledge from our Creator.  If your mortal journey does happen to end today, are you ready for the next stage of your journey—the next stage of your immortal journey in Jesus’ Kingdom and beyond—into the state of existence the Bible calls eternity?  Hey, I’m just asking . . .

Make a Quality Decision!

Today, right now while you’re reading these words, make a quality decision to follow Jesus wholeheartedly during 2010.  Some of the words of an old Gospel song go something like this:

I have decided to follow Jesus,
No turning back.
Though none go with me,
Still, I will follow.
No turning back,
No turning back.

During last year—the one we called 2009—four dear friends of mine ended their mortal journeys. God fully prepared them to move on into the next, immortal stage of their journeys, but none of them knew that their mortal journeys would end in 2009. Life just doesn’t come with that kind of knowing.  Why?  Do you think about why you’re here? What are the reasons you’re here? Why were you placed in 2010, no matter how old you are as you read these lines? What’s 2010 going to be all about for you?  Do you remember these words I wrote in an earlier issue of The Traveler?  Please say them right now…out loud:

          I am a spiritual being sent to earth to have a temporary, mortal, human experience, not a human being sent here to have a spiritual experience.

Just so you don’t get the wrong idea, that statement has nothing to do with reincarnation or anything similar; the Bible absolutely denounces any beliefs in reincarnation or similar drivel.  You were sent here to get prepared for the next stage of your immortal existence in Jesus’ Kingdom, and then beyond that in a state of existence called eternity.  What’s the preparation process like?  How does it “work”?  What will God be doing in you, through you, and as you as He prepares you during 2010 for the next stage of your existence as an immortal being?  The Bible answers such questions with many different word pictures and images, but I’m going to attempt to shed a little light on the matter by writing about God’s image.

The Image of God

God’s vision for you . . .  God’s dream for you . . . God’s purposes for you . . .  are  to restore you into his clear image.  God originally created humans in his clear image.  By sin, you marred, blurred, and dimmed his image in you.  God is restoring his clear image in you. It’s really that simple.  That’s why you’re here for this mortal stage of your journey through time.  The fullest—the perfect—image of God is Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 3: 18; 4: 4; Colossians 1: 15;  Hebrews 1: 3).  Jesus is the unmarred, unblemished, completely focused image of God.  You are a marred, blurred,  fuzzy, unfocused image of God.  

What’s the definition of “image of God” in humans?  It means that we are visible representations of the invisible God.  Jesus is God’s perfect visible representation; You are God’s imperfect visible representation. How is God restoring his clear image in you?  You must cooperate with Holy Spirit daily as He empowers you (from within where He lives in your spirit) to change your mind from choosing to live a self-filled life to choosing to live a Jesus-filled life.  It’s a day-by-day, week-by-week, month-by-month process during 2010 by which God will restore you into his clear image…if you fully cooperate with Him in that process.

Changing your mind (what the Bible terms “repenting” or “putting on the mind of Jesus”) day after day, year after year, changes you more and more into the fully restored, clear image of God.    (Romans 12: 1 and 2;  Ephesians 4: 23, etc.)  During 2010, God will take whatever steps are necessary (many known only to Him) in order to accomplish his vision for you.  He is eternally farsighted.  You are very often shortsighted, not seeing beyond the finite limitations of your mortal life.  

Your past does not necessarily equal your futureto be fully restored into the clear image of God.  As mentioned earlier, God is an altogether good God, and everything He does is good.  (Psalm 119: 68)  Everything—everything!—that happens in your life is working toward your ultimate, final good.  (Genesis 50: 20;  Romans 8: 28, and similar references taken together as a whole!)

Like a magnet irresistibly draws iron filings to itself, God is inexorably drawing you to Himself through the once-for-all sacrifice of Jesus on the cross of Calvary—continually restoring you into his clear image! (John 6: 44 and 12: 32)  The Bible begins with “In the beginning God . . . . ” The Bible wraps it all up with “In the end God . . . . ” (Genesis 1: 1 and 1 Corinthians 15: 28)  As I indicated earlier, what I have written about the image of God is only one of the ways the Bible illustrates God’s plans and purposes for you during 2010; there are numerous other “word-pictures” in the Bible where God teaches about his plans and purposes for you.

Right now—today—as you read these words, the year 2010 stretches out before you as a blank tablet.  But the only one of those 365 days you have guaranteed to you is today (and—maybe—not even all of today!).  Use today wisely as part of your preparation to make the transition from “earth to glory,” as an old Gospel song puts it.  So . . . here we are at the beginning of a chunk of time we call 2010.  Some of you reading these words are in North America, some in Africa, some in Europe, Some in Australia, some in Asia, and some in the island-nations of the world.  What are you planning to do with this fragment of time we call 2010?

With all my heart, I urge you to cooperate with God in all the ways He wants to restore you into his clear image as seen in Jesus.  Just let go of your past (which there’s no way you can change) and walk with God confidently and boldly into 2010.  Jesus—in his unbodied form of Holy Spirit—lives within you and wants to progressively, little by little, transform you and restore you into the whole, complete person you were originally intended to be before you were ever implanted in your mother’s womb.

Let God do whatever He chooses to do in your life during 2010 so that process can continue in you unimpeded and unrestricted.  Let 2010 be your year of transformation and restoration!  Pay attention!  You’re saying to yourself“During 2010 I’m going to do such and such.” You don’t know if you’re even going to be given one more day to live.  Your entire life is like a morning fog that all too quickly dissipates when the sun comes up.  You need to learn to say, “If it’s God’s will and I’m still alive, I will fulfill his plans and purposes for me this year.”  (James 4: 13 – 15, paraphrased)

To Think About This Month: 

“If it should happen that I die in 2010, I want to make sure all I have left to do is die!”

Bill Boylan
Life Enrichment Services, Inc.
Revised and updated December 2020

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